Miscellanea: A Very Short Glossary of Military Terminology

For this week, I wanted to expand a bit on a comment I made on Twitter expressing some frustration at the failure of journalists attempting to cover the war in Ukraine (and thus interpret military experts for a lay audience) to master some of the key military terminology being used and to convey its actual … Continue reading Miscellanea: A Very Short Glossary of Military Terminology

Collections: How the Weak Can Win – A Primer on Protracted War

Thanks to our volunteer narrator, this post is now available in audio format. This week, in an effort to fill in some of the theoretical basis for thinking about how weaker powers think about fighting against or defending themselves from stronger powers, I'm going to give you all a basic 101-level survey of the theory … Continue reading Collections: How the Weak Can Win – A Primer on Protracted War

Collections: Fortification, Part II: Romans Playing Cards

This is the second part of a five part (I) series covering some of the basics of fortifications, from city walls to field fortifications, from the ancient world through the modern period. Last time, we looked as the ancient besieger's playbook (both the motives and options for taking walled cities) through a case study of … Continue reading Collections: Fortification, Part II: Romans Playing Cards

Collections: The Battle of Helm’s Deep, Part VIII: The Mind of Saruman

This is the eight and last part of a series taking a historian’s look at the Battle of Helm’s Deep (I, II, III, IV, V, VI, VII) from both J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Two Towers (1954) and Peter Jackson’s 2002 film of the same name. Last time we looked at the overall impact of morale and … Continue reading Collections: The Battle of Helm’s Deep, Part VIII: The Mind of Saruman